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    Examination of archaeological practice in applied and theoretical contexts, including field archaeology and resource management, with case studies from throughout the world. Training is provided in archaeological surveying and mapping.

    This is a course about the professional practice of archaeology. It examines the theory, processes and outcomes of archaeological work, as well as the various situations in which archaeologists practice today throughout the world. Students are trained in archaeological survey and recording methods and carry out actual site mapping and assessment assignments. The course covers professional fundamentals and issues such as site inventory, assessment, investigation, lab and chronometric analyses, management, ethics, interpretation and education.

    About this paper

    Paper title Archaeological Practice
    Subject Anthropology
    EFTS 0.15
    Points 18 points
    Teaching period Semester 2 (On campus)
    Domestic Tuition Fees ( NZD ) $1,173.30
    International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.
    ANTH 208 or ARCH 201
    ARCH 301
    Schedule C
    Arts and Music
    May not be credited together with ANTH309 passed in 2002 or 2003.

    Zac McIvor

    Teaching staff

    Course Co-ordinator: Zac McIvor

    Contributing lecturer: Associate Professor Tim Thomas


    Paper Structure
    Primary themes:
    • Applied, theoretical and (where applicable) ethical aspects of archaeological survey, recording, excavation, laboratory and conservation work
    • Training in archaeological survey, recording and assessment fieldwork
    • Global review of the public institutions, processes, interests and ideas that have shaped New Zealand and world archaeology
    Teaching Arrangements
    Taught lectures, laboratories, supervised archaeological site visit and assessment.

    Burke, H., Morrison, M., & Smith, C. 2017. The Archaeologist's Field Handbook. 2nd edition. Crows Nest, NSW, Australia: Allen & Unwin.

    Course outline

    Will be available on Blackboard at the beginning of the course.

    Graduate Attributes Emphasised
    Global perspective, Scholarship, Communication, Critical thinking, Cultural understanding, Information literacy, Self-motivation, Teamwork.
    View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
    Learning Outcomes

    Students who successfully complete this paper will:

    • Learn how to carry out archaeological fieldwork, including GPS, tape and compass and level survey and mapping
    • Learn how to prepare site records and basic assessments consistent with the requirements and standards of contemporary archaeology
    • Become aware of the ways in which national and cultural interests, legislation, and public policy have shaped international archaeological practice
    • Become well informed about the formal processes, responsibilities and opportunities for undertaking approved archaeological work and research


    Semester 2

    Teaching method
    This paper is taught On Campus
    Learning management system


    Stream Days Times Weeks
    A1 Thursday 11:00-11:50 29-35, 37-42
    Friday 11:00-11:50 30-35, 37-42


    Stream Days Times Weeks
    Attend one stream from
    A1 Wednesday 10:00-11:50 29, 31, 37
    A2 Wednesday 10:00-11:50 29, 32, 37
    A3 Wednesday 13:00-14:50 29, 31, 37
    A4 Wednesday 13:00-14:50 29, 32, 37
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